WINDHOEK: Swakopmund-based Karakulia Weavers was on Thursday announced as the winner of the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) category in the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN)’s Good Business Award.
The bank announced the winners of its Good Business Award competition, which recognises its exemplary clients, at a gala dinner held in the capital.
The runner-up in the SME category is Enviro-Fill, which received a contract from the City of Windhoek in 2006 to operate and manage the Kupferberg Landfill for 10 years.
The private tertiary education institution, the International University of Management (IUM) won the first place in the Larger Enterprises category, while Armstrong Construction, a brick manufacturing plant located in the Kavango Region’s Kapako Constituency came in second.
In the sustainability category, NamPost won the first place, while the Central Northern Regional Electricity Distributor (Cenored) came second.
A judging panel screened and rated the entrants based on various key developmental issues, such as the number of jobs created or retained, managerial capacity, business records, adherence to good governance practice and Previously Disadvantaged Namibian ownership, among others.
The awards are based on the objective criteria of job creation, local procurement, empowerment and development impact.
Deputy Minister of Finance Calle Schlettwein addressed the keynote address at the event.
“By recognising enterprises’ efforts to create lasting jobs and income, adopt good governance practices, and make a positive contribution to Namibia’s economic landscape, the award shows how far Namibian businesses have come and what their impact is on the economy,” he said.
Meanwhile, DBN Chairperson Elize Angula said with the Good Business Award competition, the DBN expresses its gratitude to the men and women who venture into business, who take risks and who work hard to create wealth in the country.
“The winners exemplify these qualities and run model businesses that help build and transform the economy; one job at a time, one new shareholder at a time. They empower individuals and communities. Combined, their efforts contribute to the empowerment of a nation: one able to feed its people, school its children, and instill dignity in individuals,” she added.
Awards were handed out in the SME, Large Enterprise and Sustainability categories to DBN clients who paid off their loans before the end of the loan term.
Karakulia Weavers is a karakul carpet manufacturing company based in Swakopmund.
The business turns Namibian karakul wool into a finished product for the local and export market, and has agents in Europe, Australia and South Africa.
The business, which has become an integral part of Swakopmund’s tourism scene over the years, is well known within the industry for its unique rug manufacturing techniques.
Its owner, Moses Helao was an employee of the company for 20 years.
Enviro-Fill received a contract from the City of Windhoek in 2006 to operate and manage the Kupferberg Landfill for 10 years.
The company, which is wholly-owned by previously disadvantaged Namibians, was established in 2001. It used DBN bridging finance to purchase a skip truck, and a tyre cutter to embark on an effective and efficient tyre disposal project. It manages dump sites in Windhoek, Tsumeb and Swakopmund.
It employs a total of 56 employees and monthly casuals and has 24 employees based at the Kupferberg dump site, 22 employees in Tsumeb, six employees in Swakopmund and four at the head office in Windhoek.
IUM is a private tertiary education institution which operates in Windhoek, Swakopmund, Walvis Bay and Ongwediva. It aims to develop human resources capacity through education, particularly for previously disadvantaged Namibians. The institution offers 33 programmes accredited by the NQA, distance schooling and has a presence in Malawi and Botswana.
Armstrong Construction is a brick manufacturing plant located in the Kapako Constituency 10 kilometres outside Rundu. It is wholly owned by previously disadvantaged Namibians.
The plant supplies the Kavango and Caprivi Regions and the southern Angolan market.
NamPost, through their partnership with Smartswitch, offers affordable and modern financial services to low income groups and the local rural population, with 122 branches nationwide.
Cenored is a regional electricity distribution company with a staff complement of 153 people. It is based in Otjiwarongo and has a shareholding consisting of NamPower, the regional councils, and major towns and villages in the areas that it serves.